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Darwin Correspondence Project

Family life


Darwin family at Caerdeon
Darwin family at Caerdeon, 1869 (from left, Henrietta, Francis, Leonard, Horace, Elizabeth)
CUL DAR 225: 72
Cambridge University Library

From the long letters exchanged with his sisters during the Beagle voyage, through correspondence about his marriage to his cousin, Emma Wedgwood, the births—and deaths—of their children, to the  contributions of his sons and daughters  to his scientific work, Darwin’s letters show how important his family was to him. Once settled at Down House in Kent, where he and Emma moved in 1842, he worked constantly surrounded by family—and servants.   His entire household, wife, children, and servants, contributed in various ways to his working life.